Jordan Davis' mother doesn't want the killing of her son to be looked at as a hate crime. The 17-year-old Davis, a black teenager, was shot and killed on 23 November by a 45-year-old white man named Michael Dunn, after what has been called a dispute over loud music.
According to reports, Dunn pulled into the parking lot of a convenience store where Davis and his friends were sitting in their car. The man asked the teens to turn their music down, at which point he and Davis exchanged words. Allegedly, Dunn then pulled out his gun and shot at the vehicle eight or nine times, hitting Davis twice.
.....Every few months, another young black person makes their way into our lives as a news headline as a result of racist violence, and still, we manage to look the other way. We yet lack the collective will to call it what it is. Whether it's Davis, Martin, Grant, Rekia Boyd, Ramarley Graham, Wendell Allen, or any of the other black people who lost their lives as the result of extrajudicial killing – one for every 36 hours in the first half of 2012.
We keep looking at their deaths in a vacuum – as the result of one unhinged killer, a lone actor who, once locked away, will eliminate the problem. When do we stop lying to ourselves?
We have deluded ourselves into thinking that the post-civil rights/Obama era is one in which racism either doesn't exist or is waning to the point of irrelevance. Whether or not things are "better" starts to feel inconsequential when "better" still means young black people aren't safe in their own skin. We haven't come to grips with the fact that America is a fundamentally racist society. Racism built this country into what we know it to be today. It takes more than observing a Martin Luther King Jr holiday and electing a black president to unwind such deepseated bigotry. We can't eradicate it if we can't name it, and so long as we refuse to name it, more Jordans, more Trayvons and more Oscars will die. Their blood is on our hands, and we've become so self-satisfied, we don't even bother to wash it off. We keep moving as if they never existed.
So the mom doesn't want it to be a hate crime but this smith fella is ready to use this killing as a wedge to say look at all the black youths getting killed by racists. Here is the problem with this sort of black racist thinking according to facts.
As a black man, I am more inclined to get shot by a WIDE margin walking out the door every day by another black person. These cases of white killing blacks while juicy media stories are not the norm. In that case how about we start touting the amount of black on white murders since that may be a form of racism according to smith's logic that these hate crimes exist every day in society?